Course overview

Warm summer nights afford a good opportunity to view the night sky. On this online course, you will be given advice on how to navigate your way around this. Pitched at a level appropriate to your needs as learners, as well as observing hints we will discuss the characteristics of the objects on view. Throughout the sessions you will be encouraged to undertake independent research (via ‘mini-projects’) and, if willing, share this with other class members. Astronomy is a very dynamic subject, and we will consider any weekly news stories of note. It is also still one of the sciences where amateurs can make a contribution and you will find out about some such notable discoveries.

Course description

Although summer nights are shorter and less dark than those of winter, at least they tend to be warmer and you might feel more inclined to go out and look at the stars, especially when you are on holiday.

The main constellations visible will be discussed and you will be set observing targets, shown ‘star hopping’ and how to keep an observing diary. Astronomy is still one of the sciences where amateurs can make a contribution and you will find out about some such notable discoveries. All very inspiring! You will be invited to share information about any observatories and astronomical places of interest that are local to you. This might inspire others to make a summer trip to one of these places.

Although there are no bright planets on view in the evening sky over the duration of the course, we will discuss the formation of the Solar System and consider ideas about how it has evolved over time. This links in well with the life cycles of stars and you will come away with a realisation that you are the result of a cosmic recycling project!

You will also be kept up to date with the latest space and astronomy stories. A number of important launches are planned for 2024. Astronomers associated with course topics will be considered and significant anniversaries will be marked.

After this course, you may wish to consider another WEA Astronomy offer or join your local astronomical society,

Come and join us!

What financial support is available?

We don't want anything to stand in your way when it comes to bringing Adult learning within reach so if you need anything to support you to achieve your goals then speak to one of our education experts during your enrolment journey. Most of our courses are government funded but if you don't qualify or need alternative financial help to access them then let us know.

What other support is available?

All of our digital content, teaching and learning activities and assessments are designed to be accessible so if you need any additional support you can discuss this with the education experts during your enrolment journey and we will do all we can to make sure you have optimal access.

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